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Love, Dishonor, Marry, Die, Cherish, Perish
really liked it
He did it quite well and to splendid effect --
Anapestic tetrameters? Oh, what the heck!?
And why not write a novel in couplets that rhyme?
The author wa
Jul 20, 2013
Jul 23, 2013
Death With Interruptions
it was amazing
Saramago's wonderful novel takes the old motif of death taking a holiday and breathes new life into it. Stylistically challenging for the reader with ...more
Oct 27, 2008
Oct 13, 2008
The Orchardist
it was ok
I really wanted to like the book -- the setting was great, and the characters were interesting. The plot, however, never achieved coherence, breaking ...more
Mar 17, 2013
Mar 17, 2013
Spies of the Balkans (Night Soldiers, #11)
liked it
Furst set a very high standard for himself early in his career. He clearly owns the period from 1933-45 in Europe and is a very fine writer of histori ...more
Jun 19, 2010
Jun 19, 2010
The Stone Raft
really liked it
Saramago's works not only keep me up late into the night reading, they also wake me from sleep in those hours after midnight that belong more to death ...more
Nov 06, 2008
Oct 30, 2008
The Unbearable Lightness of Being
it was amazing
Novels with a philosophical ax to grind can be heavy going, particularly when one blade of the ax is political. Kundera, however, manages to put a kee ...more
Oct 20, 2008
Oct 15, 2008
The Discovery of Heaven
really liked it
What a magnificent book! Despite the hubris of Mulisch in incorporating large swatches of his autobiography into the fabric of this literary counterpa ...more
Oct 24, 2008
Sep 13, 2008
A Strangeness in My Mind
really liked it
Orhan Pamuk, the winner of the 2006 Nobel Prize in Literature, is Turkey's best-selling writer and first Nobel Laureate, but he is more than a talente ...more
Jan 20, 2016
Dec 08, 2015
Night Train to Lisbon
it was ok
The book suffers from significant problems. The English translation from the German is wooden; the book is too long; the editing is bad (e.g., a Greek ...more
Nov 14, 2008
Nov 10, 2008
The Sacred Book of the Werewolf
really liked it
Viktor Pelevin has given us a delightful critique of modern Russia inside a love story, which is inside a fairy tale, which is inside a meditation on ...more
Oct 06, 2008
Oct 06, 2008
The Storytelling Animal: How Stories Make Us Human
did not like it
Is Jonathan Gottschall padding a portfolio for tenure? That's about the only excuse I can come up with for the waste of paper used in printing this bo ...more
Aug 12, 2012
Aug 16, 2012
The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest (Millennium, #3)
it was amazing
Larsson found his stride with this, the last number of the Millenium Trilogy. When I reached the middle of the book, I couldn't put it down and finish ...more
May 30, 2010
Jun 02, 2010
The Children's Book
really liked it
Despite Byatt's tendency to tell the reader everything she has discovered in her background research for a novel, The Children's Book is an engaging w ...more
Oct 18, 2009
Oct 19, 2009
The Narrow Road to the Deep North
it was amazing
Devastatingly beautiful in its evocation of complex emotions through the use of simple language, this book has haunted me since I finished it. On seco ...more
Nov 08, 2014
Nov 03, 2014
did not like it
Perhaps National Public Radio should desist from recommending books and music, because the preferences indicated, for the most part, lack any sense of ...more
Oct 05, 2015
Oct 05, 2015
This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. The Climate
it was amazing
The book could also be titled "This Changes Nothing," because only .1% of humans alive today have the native intelligence to understand why the issue ...more
Nov 28, 2014
Nov 18, 2014
The Infinities
really liked it
I cannot resist reading Banville aloud. His command of prose style is without equal among contemporary writers in English. When Banville uses a comma, ...more
Mar 11, 2010
Mar 12, 2010
Heaven and Hell
it was amazing
Beautiful beyond belief, as stark as Iceland's shores, as full of life, as full of death as Ocean when it roars. A telling worth the hearing by a bard ...more
Sep 07, 2015
Aug 20, 2015
The Sorrow of Angels
really liked it
Whereas Heaven and Hell, the first volume of the author's trilogy examining the relationship between the living and the dead in late nineteenth-centur ...more
Oct 03, 2015
Oct 03, 2015
The Bookman’s Tale
liked it
Although it's not in the same class with Possession or Shadow of the Wind (as implied by the blurbs), Charlie Lovett's homage to the rare book trade i ...more
not set
Jul 13, 2013
The Neighborhood Project: Using Evolution to Improve My City, One Block at a Time
it was ok
I had high hopes for this book, in which the author tells the story of his attempt to describe and then to improve his home city of Binghamton, New Yo ...more
Sep 22, 2011
Sep 23, 2011
Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind
it was amazing
This was not what I was expecting -- it was far better. Harari has produced a well-reasoned, well-researched extended essay on the human condition tha ...more
May 30, 2015
Mar 23, 2015
it was amazing
Carole Maso's novel is absolutely stunning. The language is beautiful and clearly demonstrates her mastery of the rhythms of English. An experimental ...more
Sep 11, 2009
Oct 13, 2008
Our Magnificent Bastard Tongue: The Untold History of English
really liked it
John McWhorter has done it again! For those who love language, there is no author better to educate and entertain on all matters linguistic. In the cu ...more
Feb 28, 2009
Mar 01, 2009
it was ok
What can one say about such a sophistic (in the modern sense) novel? In this solipsistic work by Breton, we are treated to a name-dropping treatise on ...more
Jan 18, 2016
Jan 15, 2016
A Place in the Country
really liked it
Sebald, one of the great writers of the twentieth century, pays homage to six artists who influenced him in this hard-to-categorize book. This is a wo ...more
Feb 25, 2015
Nov 26, 2014
Men of Tomorrow: Geeks, Gangsters, and the Birth of the Comic Book
really liked it
I read this as background for Michael Chabon's The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay. Research soon turned into fascination with the true stor ...more
Apr 15, 2010
Feb 25, 2010
American Gods (American Gods, #1)
did not like it
My negative reaction to this book is probably due to one of two factors: as an academically trained historian of religions and folklorist, I know too ...more
Aug 16, 2009
Aug 07, 2009
The Reader
really liked it
In his thought-provoking exploration of Vergangenheitsbewaeltigung Schlink presents the reader with a number of moral conundrums as well as with compe ...more
Jan 13, 2009
Jan 13, 2009
The Final Pagan Generation
really liked it
Watts surveys the transition from traditional religion to Christianity in the fourth century by following the careers of four influential members of t ...more
Dec 2015
Nov 30, 2015
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